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Walking the banks of the Yukon River last night, in Whitehorse, Yukon Territory (on our annual trip up the Alcan Highway to run the guide business in Gakona, Alaska), we were treated to gorgeous blue water, views of river ice beginning to head downstream, a beaver on the banks and a plethora of signs telling of the rich history of this area.  Most of the signs along that particular river loop tell the stories involving the sternwheelers that did the heavy work of hauling people, supplies, and spoils of the mining activities in the region (silver-lead ore in the case of the Klondike).  We found the dam in Whitehorse, along with its fish ladder to allow the migrating salmon upriver, especially interesting.

The retired Klondike, one of the famous sternwheelers that helped shaped the history of this region of Canada and the far North in the 1880's.

Other sights on the trip included so much wildlife as always! We saw a hungry black bear high up in a Poplar tree, munching away on newly emerged buds, completely oblivious both to us and the cracking, tiny branches holding him that seemed ready to give way any second. Many buffalo eating the tender spring grass in the ditches alongside the roads broke up that stretch of the trip, and we found the new spring babies especially endearing.

Black Bear high in a tree, stuffing himself on spring buds.

Migrating caribou always keep drivers alert, as they seem to be around every corner on some stretches of road, and don’t seem in too big a hurry to move.

Migrating spring Caribou on the Alcan Highway.

This trip between North Carolina and Alaska, while long (especially with a 2 and 4-year-old), has become a regular part of us and the kids’ lives, and has become something we look forward to. It marks the passing seasons for us as we migrate in the spring and fall along with the animals, watching them move to find food, just as we move to find our work. Our life has settled into a regular rhythm that isn’t the easiest, but allows us and our growing kids to see things that most people will never get to. The nomadic life it seems, is the life for us.~

Yukon buffalo enjoying tender new grass alongside the Alcan Highway.

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